Court bans dismissal of pregnant workers

It is illegal for employers to sack their pregnant workers, even if they are unaware of the pregnancy, unless the employee in question totally refuses to do her job, according to a Supreme Court decision made public yesterday. The court ordered a firm – whose particulars were not immediately available – to reinstate a pregnant mother it had sacked and to pay her salary, including interest, for the period during which she was unemployed. In response to the woman’s suit, the Supreme Court noted that the ban on dismissal applies not only to the months of an employee’s pregnancy, but also for one year after she gives birth. Furthermore, a working mother can take over a year off work – without losing her job – on the grounds of health problems arising from delivery. The only exception to the ban is for serious reasons such as «behavior that contravenes good faith and industrial relations ethics.»

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